New York Fashion Week takes the world by storm each year – showcasing the hottest up and coming looks that trend spotters will want their hands on this season. But – NYFW isn’t the only design-forward event to hit the Big Apple in the Fall. Our Cityline Beauty Expert, Tracy Peart, had the opportunity to attend The Curvy Con: a three-day convention celebrating body positivity and inclusivity.
Here’s Tracy’s recap on her experience:
On her looks:
I was there for two days. On the Friday when I arrived, I wanted to wear something that made me stand out. I’m from Canada, nobody knew who I was. There’s a company called Ofuure and they create beautiful, African patterns. I wore a navy blue two-piece with orange accents in it, embellished with poofy sleeves and a long poofy skirt. I couldn’t even take two steps, everybody kept stopping me. “Where did you get this? Where did she get this? Who are you?”
The second day was the actual panel. We all wore items from Anthropologie, who sponsored the event. We want to be able to walk into a mall, eventually, and have all stores offer sizes 0-34. Anthropologie is one company that’s working towards doing that. I wore a beautiful white dress and it had yellow and orange accents – it felt very 70s/Mary Tyler Moore. I loved it. A little girl even came up to me on the street and said, “you look very pretty today”! I was so flattered.
On the most memorable conversation Tracy had:
The most memorable part of the conversation is when we all talked about the advice that we would give our younger selves – like when we first started our careers. All of our answers were very interesting; and a lot of it had to do with self-care. Many were saying to “take care of yourself”, some even said, “get a therapist”. I wish I could have gone back in time and learned not to compare as much as we do today, especially with social media. We’re quick to look at other people and feel bad about ourselves. They either have more money than you, are more successful than you, look prettier than you…. you’re constantly comparing and all that does is take you off track.
Self-care is a big one for me too. That part of the discussion really resonated with me. We DO need to take care of ourselves and find somebody to talk to. If we can’t afford a therapist, find somebody already in your life who will listen. I used to run track when I was in elementary school. And I remember one of the things they taught you is that when you’re running, if you hear footsteps, or you see someone beside you – never look over your shoulder because it’s a distraction. So, always run your own race and run forward. Don’t compare yourself. And you’ll get to where you need to go. Stop worrying about what everybody else is doing and who’s doing better than you.
What Curvy Con mean to Tracy, and its importance:
It’s so important because we finally have a voice for a community that forever didn’t have one. The power of social media means we’re out there making ourselves be seen without an overpowering executive voice saying we can’t. Cityline Stylist Iva Grbesic and I have started a hashtag together called #itfitsmetoo, where we’re celebrating retailers that are expanding their sizes.
These types of expos are great, because they’re celebrating people who haven’t been heard. We’re not there yet where we can’t separate fashion – we still do have to celebrate the plus size community, but my goal one day would be that we don’t have to separate it anymore. And we can all be one. The looks women wore at the event were ones that some wouldn’t necessarily wear in other environments, but you felt so comfortable and loved there. It was the epitome of women empowering women.
On the impact that proper representation in the beauty world can have on future generations:
To be blunt, his has been going on since the beginning of time. When I was a teenager I never felt like the beauty community was representing me. And while doing a prom dress segment on Cityline, I learned so much about the mindsets of teen girls; but I realized most of all that nothing’s changed between when I was their age, and now. If you’re plus size or you look different, you’re still ostracized – resulting in self-esteem issues. Many of these girls will think to themselves, ‘i’m not even going to go to the prom or go to X and Y because I can’t find a store that will dress my body size.’ This is why I LOVE to celebrate clothing lines that are expanding. The teen girls who were in my segment felt great. By the end of that segment, they were dressed up, they had their hair and makeup done, they had prom dresses, and I saw in their faces that they felt pretty. My mission, through all work that I do, is to show young women of every shape and size that they are never alone.
For more on Curvy Con, click here.
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